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Saturday, March 21, 2015

ethics considered in township vote

Korns plans to have an opinion prepared to at least verbally present at the public hearing on the zoning ordinance.
He said he likely will not tell Thomas to abstain from voting because of the class/subclass exclusion.
“It says that if a public official is voting on a matter that will affect them the same as the members of the township as a whole or a subclass they're in, there is no conflict,” he said.
“This is a township-wide zoning amendment that affects every property owner in the township equally, and that is the classic example of what the subclass is,” he said.
Korns said he isn't certain Thomas would meet the criteria of being aware of a pecuniary benefit because there hasn't been an increase in Thomas' ability to drill on his property.
“In this case, Mr. Thomas was in a zone that allowed drilling previously” under the current ordinance, he said. “Under the proposed map he is still under a zone that allows drilling. There actually hasn't been any change.”

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